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Dive Review of Adventure Kommodo in
Indonesia/Raja Ampats

Adventure Kommodo, Jan, 2005,

by Sherry Wren, CA, USA . Report 1583.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Australia, Figi, PNG, Thailand, Red Sea, Sea of Cortez, Belize, Caribbean, Turk and Caicos
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]No real limits except to surface after 70 minute dive time.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Excellent for small critters, nice camera table, crew was excellent with the cameras.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments The Raja Ampats are outstanding. The diversity of fish and corals is amazing. Larry Smith runs all of the dive operations and is truly the master planner, diver, and dinner companion. I would go anywhere he was running an operation because he is the consumate master. We started out of Sorong and dove Batanta, went to Kofiau where the species diversity counts were perfromed, Deer Island, Waigo, Wayag, Gam, Melissa's reef, Wagmab, and Batanta again. Highlights were incredible wobbegongs ( up to 6-7ft) on many dives, ghost pipe fish, scorpion fish, mandarin fish, pygmy sea horses ( 5 on one fan alone), ocellated flounders, emperor shrimps, leaf scorpions, blue ring octopus, cephalopods, a billion different nudribranchs, and more fish than could be believed. This was not a place for pelagics. Melissa's reef and Batanta Southwest were some of the best dives I have done in my life. It was a virtual fish highway. Nitrox was available and no limits were put on dives. My typical profile was max depth 90 and dive times of 70 minutes. 4 dives a day were offered.

The boat service was outstanding, you could have American or Indonesian breakfast cooked to your order daily. It did take 2 days for the Indonesian chef to believe I could eat food as spicy as I wanted it. Lunch and dinner was by Holgar a german chef with clearly a lot of continental experience. Dinner was served like a nice restaurant with free flowing wine from the owners vineyard. Vegetarian guests were accomdated without any difficulty. Cabins were OK, they are strangely elevated to a level that is difficult to get into, this allows for unbelievable storage space under them. Unfortunately you do not have a private head but each 2 cabins share a head with the upstairs cabins using the facility on the dive deck. This sis not present anyproblems but en suite is always nicer. Boat was clean, crew was very attentive and professional. Larry Smith's training and service philosophy is visible everywhere.

Larry has also set up some excursions off the boat that showcase some of the unbelievable beauty and richness of the islands. We did a Bird of Paradise walk inot the jungle to see these magnificent birds do their morning dance, unfortunately a sea eagle landed on the tree and stopped the action. Another excusrion was a wine and chees cruise through rock islnads with orchids, hornbills, pitcher plants, and scenery. The best trip was to one of the largest caves I have seen, if it was in the US this would be a five star destination just to see the formations. An excursion to a working pearl farm did not work out but I would have been very interested.

I can recommend this trip to anyone who enjoys great company, diving, and a joy of life. I am already planning my next trip on this outstanding boat and with Larry Smith.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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